Friday, April 26, 2013

The Wormworld Saga featured in Spirou Z

The Belgian comic publisher Dupuis is celebrating the 75th anniversary of its extremely popular Spirou magazine by launching a digital version for tablet devices. Spirou has always been a backbone of Franco-Belgian comic culture and I feel extremely honored to be able to contribute to this new chapter in Spirou's history by having Chapter 1 of the Wormworld Saga featured in it.

Another exciting news comes right along this appearance: The Wormworld Saga Print Edition will also be published by Dupuis which means that  the french version will soon enter Europe's largest comic book market. I'm looking forward to all the new readers that will be able to discover the Wormworld Saga through these new channels!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Intermission in Austria

Last year, on Frankfurt Bookfair, I was invited to have a signing session at the Vienna Comix comic convention in Vienna, Austria. It was my first signing event on a comic convention ever and, as you can see above, my work was even featured prominently on the convention posters. It was really a great event and I was surprised how many fans I've got in Austria. My story even seems to be liked among the imperial troops from a galaxy far far away!

I really enjoyed the convention. I met and talked to great people and I even received a fantastic fan artwork:

Many thanks to ├ľnder Tasdelen for this wonderful original pencil artwork featuring all the main characters of the first 5 chapters of the Wormworld Saga. I'll keep it in a save place!

The convention issued a limited edition of 111 numbered prints of the last panel of Chapter 1 that were only available at that day on the convention:

I received 20 of these prints for my own disposal and created a special limited edition with Wormseal stamp that is now available in the Wormworld Shop as long as stock lasts.

Vienna Comix wasn't the only reason for me to travel to Austria. My friends from Video2Brain invited me to record new video training material at their studio in Graz. And man did I record! I spent nearly two weeks in the studio and my first task was to create a long comprehensive introduction to digital painting in Photoshop. In 8 hours this training will contain a detailed description of each and every tool that I use in the digital painting process and the techniques are later demonstrated in three illustration projects - a digital drawing (of a sailing ship), a colored digital drawing (a dwarf portrait) and a digital painting ("The White Palace on the Red Planet"):

The second big task was to produce a comprehensive video training about the creation of a comic page. For this training I had the idea to create a page from an imaginary "Captain Orion" comic. In 8 hours this training is going to show the complete creation of the page including rough composition scribbles, preliminary drawing, inking, coloring and layout of the word balloons:

And then, on my last day in Graz, I was able to record a very special video. My task was to create a painting completely out of thin air, without talking too much about my painting technique but concentrating on the creative process. I started with a completely abstract composition and discovered a scene that was hiding inside it. The painting that came to life in this video is "The City at Ruby Mountain" and you will hear me talking mostly about the story of that place that unfolds in my brain while I'm painting. This creative journey was completely documented in a 2 hours video and I'm really looking forward to it. The only downside to all that is, that the trainings were recorded in German language only. Right at the moment I can't say anything about possible translations.

Now I'm back home and before I'm going to start my work on Chapter 6 I will make another adjustment to the Wormworld Saga website that I've been planning for quite some time now. If everything works out like intended, it will be a huge thing. I'll keep you updated!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Chapter 5 now available inside the app!

Finally we've managed to publish Chapter 5 inside the Wormworld Saga App. We're over a week late on this and I'm really sorry about that. I don't even want to bore you with the filthy details of our failure. Let's just say that the only way to make sure that a new chapter will launch simultaniously on the webside AND the app is to wait with the release until all the data for the app is ready and tested. This will mean that it might happen that although I might be ready to launch on the website I would need to wait with the launch until the app developers give their green light. I'm used to launch right at the moment when the last touches for a chapter have been done. This time we launched on Sunday and the last adjustments to the layout were done on Saturday so there wasn't much time lost. I anticipated the app launch on Monday which also wouldn't have hurt much. Well, the one positive aspect of a delayed launch inside the app is, that it gives me the chance to fix all the typos that the readers of the web version point out. It's not easy to update a chapter inside the app so we really have to make sure to find as many typos as possible before the launch. This might become a bit of a challenge if we launch simultaniously.

However, there it is - Chapter 5 inside the app. The Collector's Edition comes with a new artbook item that has added a new page to the artbook index!

"The Making of Chapter 5" features a gallery of color studies that I painted for Chapter 5:

And I've written up some info about my use of color schemes into which I've put particular care during the production of Chapter 5:

There's also a bunch of sketches in the article (Raya's room, the waterfalls, the transport ship...) and I've also gathered some info about the higher resolution that I produced this chapter in. So, it's a nice artbook item and as always it's accompanied by the artwork and the prelim version and the author commentary inside the chapter itself.